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21:002024. június 23.
21:002024. június 23.

Wide-Ranging Opportunities May Open Up for Hungarian Government in Brussels

Janos Boka, Hungary's minister for EU affairs, presented the latest developments in the Article 7 procedure in a press conference following the General Affairs Council meeting.

2024. 05. 22. 15:23
Hungary's EU Affairs Minister Janos Boka and his Italian counterpart Raffaele Fitto talk at the start of the EU affairs ministers' meeting in Brussels (Photo: MTI/EPA/Olivier Hoslet)
Vélemény hírlevélJobban mondva- heti vélemény hírlevél - ahol a hét kiemelt témáihoz füzött személyes gondolatok összeérnek, részletek itt.

A complicated back and forth correspondence battle is taking place in Brussels. European Commission Vice-President Vera Jourova, wrote to the Council on May 6, to inform them that the Commission no longer considered there to be a clear risk of serious breach of the rule of law in Poland.

You will recall that a few weeks before the Polish municipal elections, the Commission concluded that there were no longer any obstacles to the release of EU development funds to Poland, and now, also a few weeks before the European Parliament elections, the Commission has concluded that there are no longer any grounds for continuing the Article 7 procedure against Poland,

stated the minister, who said that the processes clearly confirm the Hungarian government's view that "the EU institutions are wielding the inappropriate procedure and in general the rule of law procedures as political tools". The minister sent a letter to Values and Transparency Commissioner Jourova inquiring about the Commission's assessment of the situation in Poland's case.

As well as [the procedures] being used as a political tool, this letter and the Commission's assessment are significant also because they list some very specific instances of the double standards we often talk about. It is a case study where the mechanism of applied double standards is perfectly and spectacularly illustrated,

Minister Boka said in Brussels. At the press conference, he also confirmed that no substantive reaction to his letter has arrived, so the aim of having "some kind of public debate on the standards applied by the Commission in this procedure, what decisions it takes and why", he said, has not yet been achieved.

He voiced as his main concern, that the Commission, which until now has been demanding concrete action in response to its rule of law objections, has now accepted a general action plan void of any timetable from Poland. The implementation of most elements of this action plan haven't even been started yet, he stressed.

It is particularly ironic that a significant proportion of the Polish legislative products referred to by the Commission are measures taken under the Morawiecki administration. "Perhaps I should now congratulate the Morawiecki government for having managed to successfully close the Article 7 procedure against Poland," Boka remarked, adding that in assessing the situation politically, he would say that " the Article 7 procedure has completely lost all credibility".

In response to a journalist's question as to whether Hungary will also prepare a similar action plan, the minister for EU affairs said, "We have always said that the Hungarian government tries to draw inspiration from all rule of law procedures. We are still at this stage, examining how this action plan option opens up a wide range of possibilities for the Hungarian government going forward."

Cover photo: Hungary's EU Affairs Minister Janos Boka and his Italian counterpart Raffaele Fitto talk at the start of the EU affairs ministers' meeting in Brussels (Photo: MTI/EPA/Olivier Hoslet)

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